NHL Game Summary - Atlanta at Washington
(Friday, October 7th)
Final Score: Atlanta 7, Washington 3
Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Peter Bondra and Marian Hossa each had a goal and two assists, while Mike Dunham had 19 saves as Atlanta defeated Washington, 7-3, at MCI Center in the first game of a home-and-home series.
After going 0-for-6 while on the power play in its first game, Atlanta was 4- for-8 against Washington, tying a franchise record for most power-play goals in one game. Seven different players scored for the Thrashers, who won for just the second time ever in Washington.
Olaf Kolzig stopped 32 shots and Mathieu Biron, Brian Willsie and Andrew Cassels each had a goal for the Capitals, who opened their season with a 3-2 win over Columbus on Wednesday. Alexander Ovechkin added one assist.
Bondra got the Thrashers on the scoreboard while on the power play. With just 6:24 gone in the first period, Hossa controlled a loose puck in the corner and skated toward Washington's net. Hossa slipped a pass to Bondra, who jammed it past Kolzig just over the goal line for a 1-0 lead.
The Caps tied the score 1:21 later when Biron blasted a slap shot from the right point that cleanly beat Dunham to his glove side for an even- strength goal.
Atlanta regained the lead while on the man advantage late in the first period. Jaroslav Modry deftly kept the puck from sliding out of the zone by wheeling and firing a slap shot from the high slot. The puck deflected off of a Capitals' defender in front of the net and it skipped past Kolzig for a 2-1 lead.
Early in the second period, Bobby Holik got his first goal as a Thrasher after he slammed the puck past Kolzig to give Atlanta a 3-1 lead. On another power play, Hossa gained the offensive zone along the left boards and backhanded a pass to Bondra, who backhanded a soft drop pass to Holik.
Marc Savard upped the Thrashers' lead to 4-1 with 9:42 remaining in the second period with Atlanta's fourth power-play goal. Bondra kept the puck in along the right boards and sent a rink-wide cross-ice pass to Savard, who was parked alone in the left circle. His slap shot beat Kolzig glove side.
Washington stopped Atlanta's three-goal outburst after Jamie Heward found Willsie, who jumped off the bench during a change. Willsie gathered Heward's two-line pass, broke in on Dunham unfettered, and beat him with a wrist shot just under the crossbar to cut the Thrashers' lead to 4-2.
The Thrashers scored their first even-strength goal of the game with 11:24 remaining in the third period after Greg de Vries hit Eric Boulton on a cross- ice, two-line outlet pass. Boulton skated into the right circle and beat Kolzig high and to the stick side with a wrist shot to put Atlanta ahead 5-2.
Washington got back within two with 7:18 remaining while on the power play in the third period. Ovechkin wristed a shot from the right circle that Dunham stopped. But while he was trying to control the rebound, Jeff Halpern hacked at the puck and it squirted to the glove-side post. Cassels found it at his feet and pumped it past Dunham to make it 5-3. It was Halpern's fourth assist of the season.
Slava Kozlov added to the scoring with 1:13 left, after he backhanded a clearing attempt from his own end that slid into the Caps' zone, off the right post and into the empty net. Hossa added a shorthanded, empty-net goal with :33.2 seconds remaining to cap the scoring.
Atlanta outshot Washington 39-22 for the game...Atlanta last scored four power-play goals against Florida on Jan. 19, 2002...Atlanta is still without superstar Ilya Kovalchuk, who remains unsigned and could play the entire season in Russia...These teams will play again Saturday in Atlanta...The Thrashers went 3-2-1 against Washington in 2003-04...Atlanta recalled goaltender Michael Garnett from the Chicago Wolves of the AHL and activated defenseman Garnet Exelby from injured reserve before Friday night's game against Washington... Linesman Tim Nowak left the game with 3:34 left in the third period with a cut to his forehead... Savard's first-period assist was his 200th in the NHL...Atlanta's Brad Larsen played in his 100th NHL game.
10/07 23:45:52 ET